Barekot landslide survivors demand to be relocated permanentlyLocals from areas at risk of landslides are currently taking shelter in nearby schools and playgrounds in makeshift tents.
On the night of July 10, a landslide buried two houses at Sarkigaun in Barekot Rural Municipality-4, killing all 12 members of the two households while asleep. Since then, Barekot residents haven’t had a peaceful night for themselves, said Lale Sarki, a neighbour of the two families killed in the landslide.
Sarki’s house is located between the two houses that were buried.
“When I learned of the landslide, I moved my family to a safe location overnight,” Sarki said. “We survived but since then, we haven’t had a peaceful night.”
Residents of Barekot ward numbers 4, 5 and 6 who are at risk of landslides are currently taking shelter in nearby schools and playgrounds in makeshift tents. According to Sarki, the locals make their way home at the break of dawn and return to the shelter once the dusk falls.
According to Ganesh Prasad Singh, a provincial assembly member who recently visited the disaster site, over 1,200 households have been displaced by landslides in Barekot so far this year.
Of the 12 people that were buried by the July 10 landslides, the body of one is still missing. That same day, a landslide buried two people at Dhuma in Barekot Ward No. 6 and injured four others. One of the two persons buried in the debris is yet to be found.
Over two weeks since the landslides, the survivors haven’t received enough relief material and are faced with an uncertain future, they say. They have also demanded that they be relocated to a safer place.
Mahendra Bahadur Shah, chair of Barekot Rural Municipality, said that his office is currently collecting relief material from various donors. He added that the rural municipality has also corresponded with the provincial and federal governments to relocate the survivors.
Provincial assembly member Singh said that the local units should collaborate with provincial and federal governments to manage sustainable housing for the survivors and mitigate the risk of disasters in the area.
The provincial government has announced that each family of the deceased would get Rs200,000 in relief.
According to the office of Barekot Rural Municipality, at least 197 houses in the local unit are in immediate danger of landslides. This year, landslides have destroyed 55 houses and damaged 477 in the rural municipality. The financial loss caused by the disaster in the local unit is estimated to be Rs640 million.